- Jelly gel is a 1980s-inspired nail trend featuring vibrant, semi-translucent colors.
- New jelly gel polish lines from Valentino Beauty Pure and Aprés Nails make this trend easy to try at home.
- When applying jelly gel polish, use a clear base coat and a clear top coat.
Jelly gel polish is the newest trend in nail salons across the country. As is the case with all nail trends—from nail charms to cat eye nails—Nails Plus is here for it.
In case you haven’t noticed, the trends of the 1980s are back in style. Fanny packs, shoulder pads, and neon colors are en vogue. And jelly gel polish—a nail trend inspired by the jelly shoes and jelly bracelets of the 80s—is the perfect complement to 80s mania.
In today’s blog, we share everything you need to know about the jelly gel nail trend: where to find the gel, how to use it, and which colors really pop. Keep reading for all the details!
What is jelly gel polish?
As the name implies, jelly gel polish is a nail trend inspired by the jelly shoes and jelly bracelets of the 1980s. For those too young to remember those years, jelly bracelets (popularized by Madonna) and jelly shoes were semi-translucent and often came in vibrant, neon colors. Sometimes, they were even sparkly.
Jelly gel polish—available now through Valentino Beauty Pure and Aprés Nail— is a partially see-through polish with a glassy finish. Some nail techs are combining jelly gel polish with chrome powder for a shiny twist on the jelly gel trend.
Which jelly gel polish should I try first?
To get started with gelly gel polish, we recommend two of our favorite, tried-and-true brands: Valentino Beauty Pure and Aprés Nails.
Valentino Beauty Pure Jelly Gels
Valentino Beauty Pure’s line of 12 jelly gel polishes is bright and bold. We especially love the hot pink Jelly Fishing and neon green Kryptonite.
Each of these cruelty-free gel colors is highly pigmented and requires only 1-2 thin coats for a full explosion of color. Use with Valentino Beauty Pure Base Coat and Top Coat.
Aprés Nails Jelly Gels
The Aprés nails line of 18 jelly gel polishes ranges from muted neutrals like the earth-toned Cedar Stain to feisty hues like the orange Bonfire Flame.
Each of these gel colors is deeply pigmented and cures in just 30 seconds. They also come with the Aprés Brush-X, a Japanese-style nail art brush made of polyester fibers ideal for smooth application.
How do I use jelly gel polish?
Jelly gel polish is applied in pretty much the same way as regular gel polish. But there are a few tricks to get the perfect set of jelly gel nails:
1. Prep your nails as you usually would, filing and cleaning the nail's surface to remove any excess oils. Because jelly gel nails are semi-translucent, it’s really important that your natural nail—or the gel tip you’re using—is clean.
2. Apply gel base coat and cure for 30 seconds under an LED nail lamp.
3. Apply a first, thin coat of gel polish and cure for 30 seconds. Repeat.
4. To get the popular chrome effect with your jelly gel nails, use an eyeshadow stick or silicone brush to pick up a small amount of the white pearl chrome powder and apply it to the nail, buffing the nail’s service until the powder turns shiny and reflective. Keep adding chrome powder and buffing the nail until the entire nail is shiny and reflective. Finally, apply a top coat and cure.
If you aren’t ready to try the chrome effect, skip this step and go straight to the gel top coat.
5. Apply your gel top coat and cure for 30 seconds.
You can count on Nails Plus for the best in nail industry news, including reviews of the best products on the market. Have questions about the products in this blog, or any other nail product? Get in touch and follow us on Instagram and Facebook! We love chatting with customers about nails + beauty!
Kim Phan, VP